b2b marketing I just finished reading The B2B Social Media Book by Kipp Bodnar of HubSpot and Jeffrey L. Cohen of Radian6.

As a regular user of HubSpot for lead generation for WOBI and HSMGlobal, and as someone on a constant search for how to drive more leads via digital marketing, I found The B2B Social Media Book an easy read full of highly actionable information which I am already applying in many different ways.

Social Media Was Made for B2B

The main premise of the book, and my primary reason for reading it, is that the authors believe that “B2B companies are better suited for social media marketing than B2C companies.

Having had experience using Social Media for both B2C and B2B marketing, I was curious to know what their logic was.

Five Reasons B2B Companies are Better Suited for Social Media Marketing Than B2B Companies.

According to Bodnar and Cohen, B2B companies have:

1. Clearer Understanding Of Their Customers – Having a clear picture of who the target audience is allows B2B marketers to better tailor their communications and establish a more productive communication with their customers.

2. Deep Subject Matter Expertise – Due to the fact that B2B company employees are often subject matter experts and thought leaders in their industries, they are able to better leverage social media to educate their audience. This means that their messages and communications, if focusing on education rather than selling, are more likely to be perceived as valuable content.

3. Need To Generate Higher Revenues With Smaller Marketing Budgets – Many B2B companies have small sales teams and limited marketing budgets, as a result – marketers need to find ways to get the “biggest bang for their marketing dollars.” Social Media provides a vehicle to deliver sales leads with a smaller marketing investment by leveraging content creation and content marketing.

4. Relationships-Based Sales – B2B Sales rely heavily on relationships. Because of the typically larger purchase prices and longer sales cycle – marketers can use social media as a way to earn trust and strengthen the relationship with customers.

5. Many B2B Companies Are Already Doing It – The authors make the case that many marketing techniques that have been used for years such as newsletters, quarterly magazines and sharing customer case studies are simply variations of the things which are now customarily part of a comprehensive social media marketing strategy.

After finishing the book and starting to apply some of the insights, I found the examples and guidelines presented to be very interesting and I’m really getting value from the different customer examples presented along with the results they’ve achieved from their B2B marketing efforts.

I particularly liked the view that “B2B social media marketing functions as a marketing annuity.”

By that, the authors mean that each investment in B2B Social Media Marketing builds compound value and “stacks on top of the other for exponential results over time.”

Permission Based Marketing Applied to B2B and Social Media

In many ways, this is the same mindset that Seth Godin proposes in Permission Marketing

In that book Seth talks about developing a “Permission Based Asset” which increases in value over time.

Overall, the concepts presented in the book are not new but they are well curated and presented in a useful, “highly-concentrated” (ie. only the good stuff) manner.

Valuable Info Presented in a Friendly Format 

What makes The B2B Social Media Book valuable is it’s specific focus on the B2B space and the level of detail on the examples and guidelines to follow. When looked from that perspective – the book is a great first guide for anyone starting in B2B online marketing or wishing a refresher on effective B2B Social Media Marketing.

How about you? 

Are you currently using social media in your B2B marketing? Any tips and suggestions you can share on how social media fits into your overall B2B marketing strategy?

 


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